Friday, August 8, 2014

Biker Friendly Pubs in the UK

I don't know why I hadn't quite processed this before, but, wow, I write a lot about motorcycles. One wonders how long I'll be able to sustain such an interest before I just get annoyed and burned out. I'm guessing the crash will time itself perfectly to align with a rise in success. This hobby will somehow find a way to turn a tidy profit and suddenly I'll think: "You know what? I'm sick of this." (a)

One of the first steps in finding such success, I'd reckon, is being asked to write posts/articles on other websites. That's not to say that I'd describe writing for the Express Insurance blog as hitting the big time, but it's a start and I was grateful to be asked.

The topic they asked me to write about was biker-friendly pubs in the UK, which sounds a simple enough assignment but actually left me asking all kinds of questions. Most of those questions swirl around one that motorcyclists deal with a lot, which is: Are motorcyclists a group?

It kind of feels like we are; that's why we all wave/nod (b) at each other. But then when you try to describe what that group is -- not the traits of a specific niche, but the overarching connecting thing -- it's not very easy.

Anyhoo, here's the article. If you can think of any sort of comment on it at all, I'd appreciate your leaving one at the bottom of the article, so the blog owners will want me as a guest writer again.


(a) Maybe not. One of the beauties of writing is that you're not stuck building the same house over and over again. New things come along, new ideas, new trends and that allows you to change.

(b) Here's some motorcycle geekery for you: One of my favourite aspects of motorcycling culture is that we tend to acknowledge each other on the road. In the United States, this is done via some sort of wave as we pass -- the cooler-looking the better. In the UK, however, we do little head nods. We do this because of the set-up of a motorcycle:
In the US, riding on the right side of the road, your left hand is closest to a passing rider. Conveniently, the left hand controls the clutch, which isn't something you use once you're moving at speed. So, it is perfectly safe to lift your left hand in salute of another rider.
In the UK, riding on the left side of the road, the hand closest to a passing rider is your right. Unfortunately, the right hand controls the throttle, which you need to keep control of at just about all times. So, lifting the right hand to salute another rider is challenging. Meanwhile, lifting the left hand in anything other than a full-on child-like wave would not be seen. So, UK riders nod their heads.
I am told that in some parts of Europe the custom is to kick out a foot as salute. I can't guess the reasoning for this.

1 comment:

Blurredman said...

I always feel that walking into a biker pub/cafe you get instantly judged by what you look at and what you're riding. It always makes me feel like what I imagine Clint Eastwood feels when he walks into an American truck stop.

I tend to therefore, not frequent them and regardless as to whether 'Motorcycle Rider Friendly', I choose to go to where ever I wish, why should I be shunned for my mode of transport? I'm not Marlon Brando.